Spring Fever

What's poppin my people,

Happy belated Koninginnedag (Queensday) to all my Dutch readers, Its been a busy week so lets skip formalities and get right into the update.

Spring is here and people have “spring fever,” wearing less, drinking more, having BBQ's and going to festivals. For those who don’t know, the Netherlands is run by a monarchy so it has a Queen like the U.K. and her day "Queensday," was April 30th and I'm still feeling the hangover. Public transportation inside Amsterdam is halted and blockades are set-up outside the city center so no traffic could be driven through. Once in the Centrum, walking or biking are the only means of transportation and even that is difficult. The whole country turns into a party, with DJ's setting up turntables on corners and people taking to the streets. Most people wear something orange cuz its the Dutch national color, but if you didn’t have any orange apparel there were street vendors everywhere selling plastic inflatable crowns. Most of the DJ’s played Dance or House music but at the Duivel (small Hip-Hop bar) they had their annual “Queens Bridge” party. Scaffolding was set-up between two buildings to make a bridge, then various local acts performed for the crowd below. I met up with some friends, had a few drinks then we wandered around from place to place like nomads. Normally I go to the same spots and see the same people but this year I adventured into the unknown and the rewards were finding underground jam sessions by DJ’s I never knew existed. It was a chill day.

As I mentioned last entry my first art exhibition was last weekend. The art exhibition was held April 22nd - 25th in various locations, featuring painters, sculptors, photographers, designers and musicians. I exhibited 20 paintings and performed on the last two days of the event at the Swanenburg Yacht Club. Let me tell you that was one of the most unique shows I've ever done. On the Yacht club floor was the gallery which featured paintings from me, painter Lottie Buit, and a sculptor whose name I can't recall at the moment. It was a dope gallery, spacious with a allot of windows and reflective surfaces so all the paintings got nice lighting. The event attracted a diverse crowd of elderly, kids and curious visitors which made my performance look like scene from an Alfred Hitchcock film. I performed on a shipping wharf about 1 meter wide with no banister support, so if I stepped to far back I would’ve fell into the water. The audience was on the patio behind the Yacht club, some in chairs, others standing or sitting on the lawn. Since the event was an art expo and not a concert I chose songs that had little profanity and more positive subject matter.

Seriously, I gave a half hour performance running thru some songs off the new album and a few from previous albums with a cordless mic that kept cutting off. The patio was packed and although it was a strange blend of people they were very enthusiastic and responsive. While I was performing the song "Slither" a old Dutch guy (had to be in his late 60's) jumps out of his seat and starts dancing the funky chicken. I was so surprised that I forgot my lines and laughed a little while spittin. I had to ad-lib the rest of the song but nobody noticed cuz we were all to busy watching the old guy. My homie Thijs taped some of the show from April 25th with his digital camera (the quality isn’t so good) you can see it under my (myspace) videos. I also posted photos from the event (shot with the same camera) in a folder on my page if you're curious go take a take a peek, I'll wait... lets move on.

I did a show at the Live on the Low (a weekly Hip-Hop event in Amsterdam, featuring diverse themes and acts from underground and mainstream artists) for the release of the "Stiekem" mixtape from DJ Illskills. My track "Controllin tha Game" with Kool G. Rap was produced by DJ Illskills (Illy for short) and is featured on the mixtape. I've talked about Illy before, he's a really humble dude but talented DJ and producer. He don’t say much, he lets the music do his talking. The release party was held 30th March and featured performances from myself, Burgaman, Kalibwoy, Kiddo Cee, L.C.S. (Lelystad), Slick & Marvel, Man Called Shock (Shockman), Mella Mell, Stash-a-Lot, Vieira (R'dam) and Kable (R'dam). The show was COCONUTS! it was a mix of Hip-Hop, DanceHall, and a little R&B. All the artists did their thing, there were allot of catz in the line-up from other cities who came to Amsterdam and represented, the vibe was positive the whole night.

I have footage from my show and a few of the other acts edited into a mini compilation called the Vinumous Chronicles: Amsterdam. You can watch it <a href="" target="_blank">here</a> or at <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. I taped with the same Dvcam I've done the other V.C. with cuz I still don't have the loot for a new camera. The shows broke it into two parts cuz there was to much footage to edit down into one 10minute clip on youtube. Part 1 consists of my show and a little behind the scenes footage. Part 2 is me backstage interviewing some of the acts before they perform. If you're a fan of Hip-Hop (if you're reading my gotta be) its definitely worth watching and if you like it, pass the link on to a friend.

My family is going thru its ups and downs like any other. My mom and sisters are good but another cousin died, while my cousin Ray (who I've mentioned before) is going away for awhile and it hurts me cuz he's a good man and good father. Its strange to be so far away from family that my world gets compartmentalized into the people I see and interact with on the daily. Once tragedy strikes through images witnessed or news conveyed it opens the eyes to what’s going on outside your world. While I sympathize with my family I’m also going through my own difficulties cuz I'm job searching right now. I stopped at my other part-time gig after being there for a year due to a change of management. They gave me great references but its difficult to job search while having to attend school twice a week at night and keeping the business running.

I've been working on new material while doing features for everyone under the sun. Jus'kiddin ...not everyone cuz some catz are wack. Really though, I've done collabos with my homie the Brigga reppin London, Cool Art MC reppin Senegal, a few catz from Surinam, Poland, Germany and the U.S. so expect to hear some new material soon. Outside of collabo projects I'm working on my new project "Verbal Sorcery," writing songs, looking for beats just getting back into production mode...its going to be a busy summer.

Until next we speak, be well

Tha One an Only

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